Wednesday, February 7, 2018

Knitting and Reading

Ginny is hosting the Yarn Along again.  She is posting the first Wednesday of each month and I am happy to join in and am looking forward to seeing what others are knitting and reading.

I am knitting Emily a sweater, at her request.  She wanted it pink and purple and I am writing up the pattern as I go.  I already have some revisions for the next one.  The yarn is knit picks Wool of the Andes.

The second photo is of socks for Mike - it is a free pattern from Purl Soho.   I am using Westcountry Tweed Yarn from Blacker Yarns.    These are the first of my #HandmadeHoliday2018.

The last picture is my progress on the Sleepy Kitten from the no. 4 edition of Making.  I made a couple of mistakes already but I am also excited to have learned a new technique - as the legs, tail and arms are knit on - pretty neat.  The kitten is a Valentines Day gift for Emily.  The yarn is a new wool line from Knit Picks called Simply Wool Worsted and is described as an Eco Wool and all the colors are undyed.

Well we are expecting a snow storm today!  It will be nice as there really is very little snow on the ground. 

Warm wishes,

Tuesday, February 6, 2018

February Already!

While members of our family have been taking turns getting sick since shortly after mid January, that has not stopped the ambitions of spring from bringing bright thoughts about all the hopeful plans ahead.

The light is returning and with it eggs!  The twelve, 2-day old chicks we received last August are now laying.  In addition, our older girls, 15 in total, are picking up their production as well.  We hope to be able to sell 5 dozen per week and still have about 3 dozen for ourselves which would mean that we would be getting our eggs for free.   We have found a wonderful source for our grain.  A local Amish farmer makes his own - he sources all GMO free grains and then grinds them himself into a formula that works well for his 1800 layers!  So we are blessed to be able to buy from him.  With this feed, even in the winter, their yolks are nice and orange.

By the way, all our chickens have names (thanks to Sarah) and they live out their entire natural lives with us, well fed, loved and sheltered.

As far as the handmade holiday 2018 (#handmadeholiday2018) I don't have much progress to show, today, but I am almost done with Mike's first sock.  I have also been working on some other knitting including a sweater for Emily, which after working on several different sizes, am hoping to publish the pattern.

I gave in and bought my first flowers this winter.  When I go food shopping I generally try really hard to walk by the flower section - I love flowers!  I did really well, but it seems that each February, I give in.  I bought that little pot of begonias at the grocery store on Friday and it was worth the tiny investment to add a little beauty to our living room.

January was a really hard month for us financially.  Having a retail online business means that sales fluctuate quite a bit, but this January was slower than previous Januaries.  However, it is a great lesson about being even more conscious of using what we have, making do, and also formulating a plan so that we don't get ourselves in such a situation again next January.  (Like saving money!)  I know I have shared in the past, but while our life may sound idyllic to some, there are extreme give and takes.  However, even when we are on the brink of considering a job or a move, our hearts stay firm in this life and secure in the knowledge that God has always provided, we have always had healthy food, and our children, although I worry we aren't doing enough for them, they will tell you they are very happy right here.